Football Travels to Columbia Saturday for National TV Game

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PHILADELPHIA - Penn's 16-game Ivy winning streak - the longest conference streak in the FCS - is on the line in a stadium where the Quakers (2-2, 1-0 Ivy) haven't lost in 16 years. That last loss? A streak buster. It stopped Penn's NCAA record 24-game winning streak. Saturday, Penn is the Homecoming opponent for Columbia (0-4, 0-1 Ivy) in front of a national television audience. Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m. on the VERSUS Network.

Catching the Game!!
Television : VERSUS. Randy Moss (play by play), Ross Tucker (analyst) and Carolyn Manno (sideline) will have the call. For a full listing of VERSUS channels and locations, click here. Channel 603 on DirecTV.

Webcast: The Penn Sports Network (PSN) will have audio available. If you aren't in the local area to hear the game on the radio or you just want to hear the Penn announcers, Brian Seltzer, C'07, and Hench Murray, C'66, GEd'67, PSN will provide audio only of the game on PennAthletics.com.

Radio: The game can be heard locally in Philadelphia on WFIL 560AM. Seltzer, in his fourth season as play-by-play man, is joined by Murray, who enters his 31st season as the analyst for the Quakers. You can listen online here.

Twitter: Follow @PennFB for live updates, photos and highlights. Click on #pennfb to see what everyone is saying about Penn Football and use it in your tweets to join the conversation.

Live Stats: Live stats can be found here. A full recap and box score will be available at the conclusion of the game at PennAtheltics.com.

Kraft Field: Nothing beats watching the Quakers in person. If you are in the tri-state area, get to Kraft Field. It's sure to be a wild atmosphere and the Red and Blue will need some support during the Lions' Homecoming game.

The Penn-Columbia Series
Penn has beaten Columbia on the field of play for each of the last 14 years - tied for the longest active streak over one opponent in the FCS. Overall, Penn owns a 68-21-1 advantage in the series, including a 16-3 edge during Coach Bagnoli's tenure (which does include a loss by forfeit from 1997). The Quakers are 20-13 all-time at Kraft Field.

The Streak! 16-Straight Ivy Wins
Penn has won 16 consecutive Ivy League games. That stands as third-best all-time behind Penn's record setting stretch of 20 between 2001-04 and another Penn stretch of 17 games from 1992-95. Currently, Penn owns the longest active conference winning streak in the FCS and 2nd-longest in Division I (behind TCU's 19). The last Ivy loss for the Quakers was Nov. 15, 2009 vs. Harvard, 24-21.

Another Streak...
On Saturday, it will have been 1,435 days since Penn's last Ivy League road loss. At that time, Barack Obama was a little known state senator in Illinois and Justin Beiber was a little known middle school student in Canada. Since then, the Quakers have won their last 11 road games against Ivy League opponents - one off the school record set by the 2002-05 Quakers. There is only one current Penn player - fifth-year senior Ryan Calvert - who has ever witnesses a loss to an Ivy opponent on the road.

...And Another...
Penn has lost 11 of their last 13 in the month of September, but when the calender turns to October, the Red and Blue have been unbeatable recently. They are 16-0 in the last three Octobers and have not lost a game in the month of October since the 27th of 2007 at Brown (31-17). The last home game they lost in that month was a week earlier, in triple overtime to Yale (26-20).

...And One More
Penn's 14-game winning streak over Columbia is tied for the longest active annual streak against any one opponent in the FCS (Lehigh beat Bucknell for the 14th straight year on Oct. 8).

Streak Busters
A lot of Penn winning streaks are on the line today - overall Ivy wins, road Ivy wins, October wins and consecutive wins over and at Columbia. That should make the Lions feel right at home. Columbia is infamous in West Philadelphia as the team that broke Penn's NCAA Record setting streak of 24 straight wins. The Lions broke that mark at this same site in 1995 with a 24-14 win over the Quakers. Penn's record, which spanned between 1992-95, has been matched by Montana, but never surpassed.

Ragone Streaking
Ragone has continued to improve this year. He has set or tied his career high for completions for three straight weeks. Spanning between the Dartmouth and Fordham games was a career-best streak of 19 straight completions. He has also thrown for more than 150 yards in three straight games. Prior to that stretch, he had thrown for more than 150 yards just once.

Colavita Milestone
Junior running back Brandon Colavita, who is second in the Ivy League in rushing with an average of 87.0 per game, will be one of the main attractions in Penn's running game. He missed last week with an injury, but in his last outing, he for 102 yards on a career-high 24 carries in the win at Dartmouth. It marked his fourth career 100-yard rushing game and left him just 11 yards shy of 1,000 for his career.

More Options
Penn has the luxury of a crowded backfield. The Quakers have four different players with more than 600 career rushing yards and all of them are juniors. Brandon Colavita leads the way with 989 yards, followed by Billy Ragone's 814, Lyle Marsh's 723 and Jeff Jack's 630. The coaches have been consistent at spreading the ball around. Colavita has the most career carries at 182, but Marsh (156), Jack (147) and Ragone (140) aren't far behind.

Highest Active FCS Winning Percentage; Highest Ivy Win Percentage of All-Time
The winningest active head coach in the FCS (73.6%), Bagnoli is undoubtedly one of the greatest coaches in Ancient Eight history. Technically, he may currently be the greatest of all-time. Including the thrilling road victory over Dartmouth, Bagnoli has coached 134 games against Ivy opponents and the Quakers have won 98 of them. That Ivy win total ranks behind just two others, but Bagnoli's record also amounts to a winning percentage of .731 which stands as the best of all-time since the league's inception in 1956.

Quick Quaker Notes
The Quakers have scored 20 or more points in nine straight Ivy games ... The Red and Blue have won the last 16 games in which they've held their opponent under 10 points ... Penn is 19-3 in its last 22 games overall and 21-2 in the last 23 against Ivy opponents.

More Penn Trends
The Quakers have outgained their opponent in all four games this year and in seven of the last eight overall ... Penn has a sack in 11 straight games and in 28 of the last 29 games, dating back to 2008 - the only game Penn went without a sack in that span was against Dartmouth in 2010 ... And in the odd and coincidental category, Penn and its opponent have combined for exactly nine scoring plays in every game this season.

Opening Drives
Penn hasn't allowed an opening drive touchdown since 2008 (span of 27 games). Since Brown opened the Nov. 1 game at Franklin Field with a nine-play, 51-yard touchdown drive, opponents are 0-for-26 when trying to reach the end zone on their first drive. (*Villanova did return an opening kickoff for a touchdown in the 2009 season opener).

Seeing Daylight
Saturday marks the first daytime kickoff for Penn this season­ - a welcome relief. For the first time in school history, Penn played its first four games at night and traditionally, stadium lights have not been kind to the Quakers during the Al Bagnoli era. Since he took over in 1992, Penn has gone 8-14 (.364). But that record is better at home, where Bagnoli has gone 6-7 under Franklin Field’s lights.

Last Time Out
Behind the strength of five rushing touchdowns, including a career-high three from junior Lyle Marsh, Penn topped Fordham, 35-20. Penn started the night the same way they ended last week. With an 89-yard scoring drive. Marsh ended the drive with a 2-yard plunge around the right side. Fordham responded right away. Michael Marando kicked a 36-yard field goal and the score was 7-3 Quakers after one quarter. Fordham took the lead in the second quarter, going over the top to get behind the Quaker defense to put the Rams up 10-7 at the 9:23 mark. Penn got back on top with 3:23 left in the half, as Marsh completed a 13-play, 84-yard drive with a superb, 11-yard run around the right end into the end zone. Ryan Becker was the QB for Penn's second scoring drive and was 4-of-6 passing for 35 yards to put the home team up by four, 14-10, at the half. The Quakers wasted little time extending that lead. They opened the second half with another 80-plus yard drive that ended in yet another Marsh touchdown. And moments later, on Fordham's next drive, Jason Schmucker intercepted a Higgins pass and ran it back to the seven-yard line. Ragone rushed it in on the next play and the Red and Blue suddenly had the game in hand, 28-10 with 8:41 to play in the third quarter. Fordham put a scare into the Quakers with back-to-back scoring drives in the fourth quarter. The second of which pulled the Rams within 28-20 with 9:49 remaining. In response, Penn calmly marched down the field with another methodical touchdown drive. Among the 13 plays and 73 yards, junior Jeff Jack ran six times for 40 and junior fullback Greg Schuster finished off the drive from six yards out.

Up Next
More national television exposure on VERSUS. The network will broadcast the Penn-Yale game from Franklin Field next Saturday (Oct. 22). Kickoff with the Bulldogs, who will enter the game with a 2-0 record in Ivy play, is set for noon.

Download: 5-Columbia.pdf